It all started with Adam and Eve

It all started with Adam and Eve

Compiled by Mary Lou Greenberg

Strict and immutable gender roles are the cornerstone of right wing theology and politics and are inextricably linked to views on marriage and the family. Here are a few notable statements.

“Feminists might attempt to claim that women are unhappy due to continued prejudice and discrimination of women based on a biased society and the male patriarchy. But there is another explanation, a simpler one based not on socialization but on science: the consciousness of modern, feminist-influenced women is in conflict with their biological drive for a husband, children, and a home. Aspirations for a career, independence, and individuality are in competition with a female’s deep and permanent biological makeup.”

Kristia Cavere, Right Wing News, June 2, 2009

“We believe that God created humans in His image, intentionally male and female, each bringing unique and complementary qualities to sexuality and relationships. Sexuality is a glorious gift from God to be offered back to Him either in marriage for procreation, union and mutual delight or in celibacy for undivided devotion to Christ….

“God has made us as differentiated beings, equal in worth, to complement one another. While individually every human has inestimable value and shows forth God’s image, our gender complementarities present an even fuller picture of God’s multi-faceted nature…

“Our responsibility is to learn about God’s plan for the two sexes, and then, rather than merely avoiding immorality, live out our sexuality in ways that honor both God and our fellow human beings. Whether married or single, biblically appropriate sexual expression requires discipline and a commitment to pursuing a life of virtue. Sex is a gift from God, but not a gift to do with as we please. ..”

From Focus on the Family’s “guiding principles on sexuality and gender.”

©Cindy Cooper; Staten Island Gay Pride Parade, God made me Trans

“The Bible clearly condemns all sexual behaviors outside of marriage between one man and one woman. Homosexual behavior is explicitly condemned in both the Old and New Testaments as an abomination and a violation of God’s standards for sexuality. We oppose the normalization of sodomy as well as cross-dressing and other deviant sexual behaviors in our culture.”

The Traditional Values Coalition

“A large and still growing body of research shows that children do best when raised by their own biological mother and father who are committed to one another in a lifelong marriage, and that adults also thrive when in such a marriage. The family should be respected as a largely autonomous sphere of self-government, not as something inferior to the civil government.”

The Family Research Council

“Sexual orientation and gender identity include pedophilia and every imaginable deviant fetish. Cross-dressers and pedophiles find refuge in this so-called hate crimes bill, while veterans and grandmas are left to fend for themselves. Obviously, this bill is not about the prevention of crime but is all about pushing a radical sexual anarchy. This bill will crush free speech and trample free exercise of religion.”

Mathew Staver, Founder of Liberty Counsel and Dean of Liberty University School of Law, commenting on the Hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2009


“The apostle Paul sets forth a concise discussion concerning the marriage relationship in his letter to the Ephesians. The Holy Spirit establishes the husband as the spiritual leader of the home, yet he is not to be domineering. The wife is to be respectful and submissive, but is not to be considered a door-mat. Unconditional love is foundational to the relationship, and given human nature, only possible when the marriage is dedicated to seeking the love of Jesus Christ.”

“‘You wives must submit to your husbands’ leadership in the same way you submit to the Lord. For a husband is in charge of his wife in the same way Christ is in charge of His body the Church. (He gave His very life to take care of it and be its Savior!) So you wives must willingly obey your husbands in everything, just as the Church obeys Christ. And you husbands, show the same kind of love to your wives as Christ showed to the Church when He died for her, to make her holy and clean, washed by baptism and God’s Word; so that He could give her to Himself as a glorious Church without a single spot or wrinkle or any other blemish, being holy and without a single fault. That is how husbands should treat their wives, loving them as parts of themselves. For since a man and his wife are now one, a man is really doing himself a favor and loving himself when he loves his wife! No one hates his own body but lovingly cares for it just as Christ cares for His body the Church, of which we are parts. (That the husband and wife are one body is proved by the Scripture, which says, ‘A man must leave his father and mother when he marries so that he can be perfectly joined to his wife, and the two shall be one.’) I know this is hard to understand, but it is an illustration of the way we are parts of the body of Christ. So again I say, a man must love his wife as a part of himself; and the wife must see to it that she deeply respects her husband—obeying, praising, and honoring him.’ Ephesians 5:22-23 TLB”

From the website of The Saddleback Church, headed by Rick Warren, who delivered the invocation at the inauguration of President Barack Obama.

“Ask my sons who’s their boss and they’ll point to Mommy. Ask them who’s mommy’s boss and they’ll say ‘Daddy.’ My wife submits to me because I submit to God. Submit! Submit! Submit! It’s a dirty word in society, but it’s a holy word in the church.”

“Testimony” at an Operation Rescue rally to whip up troops before they tried to shut down abortion clinics in NYC, April 1988

Mary Lou Greenberg is an activist in New York City who writes for Revolution Newspaper.

Also see “American Taliban: Sect Controls Women’s Destinies” by Carolyn Jessop and Laura Palmer in this edition of On The Issues Magazine.

ALSO see Busting Bogus Biology and Beliefs by Mahin Hassibi in this issue.